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Fraser McMullen Cup Joy For Cork Con

Fraser McMullen Cup Joy For Cork Con

The Cork Constitution Under-20s won the Fraser McMullen Cup for the first time in the club’s history as they came from behind to beat Terenure College 12-7 at Clonmel RFC on Saturday.

Out-half Tomas Quinlan celebrated his call-up to the Ireland Under-19 squad by kicking all of Cork Constitution's points in their hard-earned win.

In perfect conditions at the well-appointed County Tipperary venue, Quinlan and his team-mates showed great resolve to overcome the concession of an early converted try and go on to be crowned All-Ireland Under-20 champions.

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Terenure College are a highly rated outfit and came into this national decider having beaten Bruff and UCD in the knockout stages.

The Dubliners took an early 7-0 lead when left winger Tom O'Brien scored a superb try, finishing off a fine back-line move that started from a lineout maul on halfway. Stephen O'Neill added the conversion.

Constitution were unlucky to miss out on a try almost immediately – an infringement was spotted by referee Oisin Quinn – but two well-struck penalties by Quinlan in the 8th and 15th minutes helped to settle his side.

And although both teams missed further penalty chances before the break, the game was set for an engrossing second half tussle.

Cork Con had a definite advantage throughout in the scrum where Aidan Slattery and current Ireland Under-20 internationals Max Abbott and Rory Burke were to the fore.

And in the lineout, the Munster youngsters were not found wanting where Gavin Mullins and Darragh Moloney benefited from the accurate throwing of influential hooker Abbott.

Sonny Dwyer, together with David Hurley and Eddie Beechinor, completed the winners' fine forward unit that competed well at every phase.

Quinlan kicked a 50th minute penalty to give Cork Con the lead for the first time. He missed with a drop goal attempt five minute later, but closed out the game with his fourth successful penalty on 70 minutes.

Terenure's sharp backs division, which included another Ireland Under-19 squad member in centre Harrison Brewer, threatened on a number of occasions in what was a very entertaining encounter.

However, they were met by a well-organised defence as 'Nure's first Fraser McMullen Cup final appearance ended in a narrow defeat.

Cork Con had two class acts in match winner Quinlan and Ryan Foley, who captained the team from scrum half.

The half-back duo kept the Constitution forwards on the right path, maintaining the momentum at crucial periods and varied the game perfectly for their side.

Congratulations to all involved at Temple Hill in the historic cup success, including coaches Brian Walsh and Paul McCarthy, and members of the management team, Ralph Keyes, Don Mullins and Colin Kilbride.

Referee: Oisin Quinn (IRFU)